As a group, celebrities are known to use aliases and request over-the-top riders when they travel, but let’s bring them down to earth for a second. What do they do to calm a common fear of flying? Do they freak out about germs? How do they pass the time during a long trip?
Turns out, they carry lucky pens, rubbing alcohol, and yarn, respectively. From weird and wacky to obsessive and superstitious, the confessions and tips from these top jet setters prove that some stars can be pretty human when they travel — even if they look so effortlessly cool while doing it.
The actress stars in a buzzy new ad for Emirates Airlines where she wakes up from an awful dream of flying on a plane without luxury amenities, but in reality flying gives her nightmares. The nervous passenger leans on a preflight ritual to make sure any type of in-flight meltdown is avoided.
“If I walk onto an airplane, I always have to go on with my right foot first and tap the outside of the plane. I have always done it. For luck,” she says. “Someone told me to do it, and I don’t remember when that was. But it’s kind of stuck.”
He plays fearless leader Jon Snow on Game of Thrones, but off camera the actor isn’t afraid to admit he’s terrified of spiders, injections … and flying. To calm his midair jitters, the TV hero says he never leaves home without a few of his “lucky mascots.”
“I’ve got a lucky pen — it’s one I’ve had since I was a kid, and I carry it everywhere. And I haven’t lost it yet; I’ve lost everything else. I’m kind of OCD, actually,” says Harington. “Every time I get on a plane, I have to touch the outside of the plane three times before I get in.”
The fashion designer of LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl’s and Paper Crownsays she almost never checks a bag. “I’ve had my luggage lost one too many times,” Conrad explains. But the always stylish star has a more creative flying pastime.
“I travel with yarn and knitting needles. I like to have something to do while I am on the plane, and by the end of the flight I usually end up with a new accessory to gift or wear.”
“I wear a full tracksuit like Missy Elliott. And I get made fun of relentlessly. But I don’t care, because they’re like pajamas. That’s why I take my Ambien and my wine and go to sleep, and it’s like I’m wearing my PJs.”
The actress calls herself “the female MacGyver” since she fills her handbag with enough odds and ends to prepare for any type of emergency scenario, including a bout of in-flight nausea.
“I keep packets of salt, like the ones from restaurants. I learned from a flight attendant that when you get motion sickness, you should mix half a cup of ginger ale with salt,” says Munn. “You down it and your nausea goes away in a minute!”
The model and host of WeTV’s Ex Isle is used to turning heads, but it’s her need to bundle up that causes passengers to stare. While she attempts to fly incognito by snoozing in her go-to window seat (she’s less likely to be disturbed by people passing her to go to the restroom), her attire gives her away.
“No matter where we’re traveling, I must have my parka, beanie, and scarf. Even if it’s a tropical island or somewhere known for their warm climate, I’m always freezing on the plane,” explains Electra. “I often get strange looks, but I tend to get cold very easily, especially on airplanes.”
The actress, who doles out lifestyle advice via her Goop blog, says she loads up on vitamin C and a magnesium-calcium remedy that calms her nerves when flying. Before she touches the seat, she uses something else to keep her germ woes at bay.
“I drink tons of water and try and stay really well-moisturized, but I’ll also spritz colloidal silver all over the seat, because it’s a natural antibacterial and antiviral.”
The unfiltered star of #RichKids of Beverly Hills, E!’s reality show about the famed 90210 ZIP code, says she has two nonnegotiable rules when she travels: Always get to the airport “unnecessarily” early, and disinfect.
“I definitely always, NO MATTER what, bring a bottle of rubbing alcohol. It comes in handier than one would think. It’s good for cleaning makeup brushes and disinfecting various things you have to touch. #OCD.”
Since the Food Network host is the chief menu planner and pilot of his own plane, there are a few unique items he never travels without and that are always flight-approved: an espresso maker, a small Ninja blender (“I never want to be a victim of bad road food”), a tin can of sardines, and a Krups electric kettle.
“You can make tea, drip coffee, oatmeal. If you’re just somewhere where you need hot water to shave, the electric kettle is really great. And you can carry your socks in it when you’re not using it. So it’s pretty great.”
The reality star loves the process of getting her hair and makeup done—her 50-step contouring session takes a whopping four hours to complete. In order to maintain her look and keep a surprisingly low-maintenance postflight routine, she credits her in-flight strategy.
“I sleep in my makeup when I travel. I use black satin pillowcases if I’m sleeping on a flight and heading straight to an event. When I land, I stop in the bathroom right after and touch up my foundation, but the rest is done.”
Considering how often the TV host is on the go, she should have her routines down pat. But the self-proclaimed bad traveler is a forgetful flier and even worse packer. “The next thing you know, you’re sitting on the plane in hot pants and sandals wondering why you’re such an idiot,” she jokes.
“I rarely manage to get everything I’ve taken with me back. I just literally shove it in; I don’t have a method. It’s like, each man for himself — you either make it into this bag or you don’t. I don’t think I’ve ever not left something behind.”
“Lavender essential oil to calm down when I get scared about being in an airplane, earplugs, my iPod Nano, and some vegan sweets as comfort food, if I get scared about being in an airplane!”0